Lima, April 18 (IANS) Peruvian authorities Thursday began evacuating some 4,000 residents near the Ubinas volcano after detecting an increase in volcanic activity.
Peruvian news website RPP said Agriculture and Irrigation Minister Juan Manuel Banites travelled from Lima to Arequipa, the country’s second-largest city, to supervise the evacuation process, Xinhua reported.
The minister said it would take about three days to complete the evacuation procedure.
The evacuation process includes transporting some 30,000 heads of livestock to safety, the minister told the news outlet.
The residents “are no longer willing to separate themselves from their belongings” because in past years when area residents were forced to abandon the animals for a long period, “they suffered huge losses”, the minister said.
Steady volcanic exhalations of smoke and ash, with plumes rising as high as 4,800 metres, and ground tremors, led authorities to declare an orange alert and move residents to temporary shelters.
The Ubinas volcano, located 1,200 km south of the capital Lima, in Peru’s Moquegua region, is currently Peru’s most active volcano.